Gary V. finds a new way of helping children » Manila Bulletin Entertainment


GARY VALENCIANO teaches Albay school children how to use a tablet

Last Christmas, Typhoon Nina wreaked havoc on Baybay Elementary School in Malinao, Albay.

“Almost all our materials, tables, desks, books were damaged. We had computers before but the flood resulting from Nina damaged everything,” said Grade 1 teacher Francia Camilo.

Helping them pick up the pieces is singer Gary Valenciano, whose Shining Light Foundation turned over a Smart school-in-a-bag to the school last April 5. Donated by the PLDT-Smart Foundation and Smart Communications, the school-in-a-bag contains a solar panel, LED TV, five tablets preloaded with the Batibot app, a laptop, Smart pocket wi-fi and smartphone with starter load, a hard drive, and curriculum-based educational content.

“When I started out in the industry, the thought of doing something like this for children was beyond me. It was usually, ‘Let’s come up with a fundraising concert because they need a building for education.’ I still do that today. But the school-in-a-bag is a totally different way of doing it. With this I can encourage and reach people through technology,” said Valenciano, who hails from Bicol.

The singer’s foundation, established in 1989, supports needy students, Christian missionaries, and people with diabetes.

‘Celebrity Bluff’ returns

“Celebrity Bluff,” hosted by Eugene Domingo, makes a comeback with awarded actor and TV host Edu Manzano as special bluffer.

Eugene Domingo

Eugene Domingo

In an interview, Domingo couldn’t contain her excitement. She said she loves making people happy and even describes it as her mission in life.

Manzano revealed doing “Celebrity Bluff” is a first for him. He said having Domingo would make the show more enjoyable and a memorable experience for him.

“Bilib ako sa kanya,” he commented. “It’s harder to make people laugh than cry. I’m looking forward to working with Uge.”

The show also features Boobay and the Kapuso boy band One Up as bluffer and performers respectively.

The new season would have back-to-back, star-studded pilot episodes with Pambansang Bae Alden Richards and comedian Brod Pete as bluffers. Competing for the grand prize are “Ika-6 Na Utos” stars Sunshine Dizon and Ryza Cenon, best friends Andrea Torres and Rochelle Pangilinan and Jennylyn Mercado and Sheena Halili.

Also joining the new season are Joyce Ching and Kristoffer Martin, Bea Binene and Derrick Monasterio, and Bianca Umali and Miguel Tanfelix.

Tidbits: Happy b-day greetings today, May 25, go to Beth Day Romulo, Anita Magsaysay, George Sison, Alma Moreno, Gelli de Belen, Betchay Nakpil, France Bonnin, Willie Baranda, Bobbit Avila, and Tacloban City Mayor Cristina G. Romualdez… May 26: Comm. Fe Aldava-Yap, Brig, Gen. Raul Imperial, Iking Araneta, Evelyn Recio-Cruz, John Rex Tiu, May Acosta, Kareen Cabrera, Liza Rodriguez, and Dr. Jo Catapang…

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